After the winter-long track World Cup series, 33 nations have qualified for the world championships at the ADT Event Center in suburban Los Angeles, California, March 24-27.
The Netherlands and Russia topped the World Cup rankings and are expected to send strong squads to Los Angeles, as is perennial track powerhouse Australia, whose nine track cycling medals at the 2004 Olympic Games led all nations.
Germany, Great Britain and Spain, each with four Olympic medals to their credit last August, are also expected to be among the primary contenders. The remaining countries that earned medals at Athens - Canada, New Zealand, France, China, Japan, Mexico, Switzerland, Belarus and the United States - have also qualified.
"This is shaping up to be the most athletically gifted field assembled in the U.S. for a track cycling event in the last 20 years," said USA Cycling chief executive officer Gerard Bisceglia. "Whether you're a cycling fanatic or a just a sports fan in general, it really is a must-see event not only because of the sheer talent that will be participating but also because of the frequency at which such a spectacle takes place in the United States."
The complete list of qualified countries includes: Argentina, Australia, Barbados, Belgium, Belarus, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Great Britain, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Malaysia, Moldavia, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Paraguay, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Slovakia, Ukraine, United States.